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Careers – Alumni

Ferndown Upper School was established in 1972 and continues it’s distinguished record of providing high quality education for students and achieving consistent academic excellence. At Ferndown Upper School, we are so proud to have such a diverse network of former students and staff, many of them enjoy staying in touch as they continue to support our school. Through our Alumni network, we are able to make a valuable link between past and current students with them providing advice about career paths, universities, qualifications, apprenticeships and other future opportunities.

We welcome our alumni to our varied career-focused events and we would love to hear from you! You can get in contact by joining our LinkedIn network or completing the Microsoft form at the bottom of this webpage to become a part of our Ferndown Upper School Alumni Association.

We will keep you up to date with news and events happening at Ferndown Upper School and invite you along to our regular school events.

https://forms.office.com/r/6LHJPhuLR6

Why not join us on Linkedin on our dedicated Alumni group, just search ‘Ferndown Upper School – Alumni’

https://www.linkedin.com/groups/9172353/

Alumni Stories
Every month we will aim to share a new alumni story with you. Showcasing what our previous students have gone onto to do since leaving Ferndown Upper School. Please watch this space for the first story!

Lucy Giles – Ferndown Upper School Leaver – 2016

When I left Ferndown Upper School in 2016, I went straight to University. I completed my undergraduate degree in English Literature at The University of Winchester and then went on to further my studies by completing a Masters also in English Literature. During my time at Winchester, I took on a part-time job as a Student Ambassador and was able to help other students to make the transition between school leaver and student. This was a great experience and allowed me to explore the different career routes that I could go onto have after my Degree.

When it was coming to the end of my undergraduate degree, I remember feeling unsure as to what to do next and not knowing what career path I really wanted to take. By taking on a Master’s Degree I was able to further my studies into English Literature and explore topics that I was really passionate about.

During my time at Ferndown Upper School from 2011-2016, I was able to take advantage of every opportunity that came my way. This was through getting involved in extra-curricular clubs such as Choir. By getting involved in extra-curricular clubs, I was able to go on and have amazing life experiences such as being able to perform in a sold-out show at The Royal Albert Hall with other local school choirs.

After loving my time at Ferndown Upper School so much, in 2020, the opportunity presented itself to return as a member of staff. I took on the position of a Teaching Assistant and have since progressed to becoming the Careers Leader and Careers Adviser at the school. By doing this role, I’ve been able to combine my love for Ferndown Upper School and everything I learned in my role as a Student Ambassador into one to be able to educate students of today about the future opportunities that exist for them once they leave school.

The one thing I would say to Ferndown Upper School students who are unsure of what to do next at any stage in their career/education, is to take advantage of everything that’s offered to you because you never know what doors it could open up to you.

David Sill – Ferndown Upper School Leaver – 2016

After leaving FUS Sixth Form in 2016, I dived straight into a degree-level Engineering Apprenticeship at Curtiss-Wright in their Defence Solutions division. I achieved a BEng Engineering Degree whilst working full time designing and testing flight-critical avionics equipment such as Multi-Purpose Flight Recorders (MPFR’s) and Air Data Computers (ADC’s) for military and commercial aircraft.

Whilst working full-time and studying for my Engineering degree, I also set up my own car tuning business called Momentum Tuning Ltd when I was just 19 years old. This business now has over 1,000 customers ranging from large commercial contracts to local celebrities and has modified a combined total of nearly £20M worth of vehicle value. In 2020 I set up a second business in the property rental industry in which I take on 6-8 bedroom Houses of Multiple Occupancy (HMO’s) under a 3-5 year Company Let Agreement and rent the rooms out individually under Assured Short-Term Tenancy (AST) agreements. The Momentum brand has grown to such an extent that I recently set up Momentum Modified Ltd and Momentum Specialist Cars Ltd too. I am now 24 years old and own 4 limited companies, three of which are in the automotive industry and one in the property rental/refurbishment industry.

During my time at Ferndown Upper School I was heavily involved in most of the sports teams including football, rugby and athletics which allowed me to network with new people outside of my usual friendship group. I still play football for a local team and many of the guys I play with are people I met at FUS. I genuinely think that playing sports is invaluable in building long-term connections and developing this competitive mindset from a young age has assisted me in various aspects of life and business.

Whilst at Ferndown Sixth Form, one of the best decisions I made was choosing Business Studies as part of my four A-Level selections. I still use a LOT of the knowledge I learned from this in running my four businesses and wouldn’t have been able to reach where I am today without this subject and teacher.

If I could give current Ferndown students some advice it would be this – You can do anything but you can’t do everything. Find something that you’re genuinely interested in and focus on it. When I left school, I went into engineering purely because I thought it would be well paid. However, my interest was always cars, property and business and since starting my vehicle tuning companies I’ve found that if you’re doing what you enjoy, the money will follow anyway.

Matt Neale – Ferndown Upper School Leaver – 2014

When I left Ferndown Upper School in 2014 I went on to start my scholarship at AFC Bournemouth. Having been part of the AFC Bournemouth academy since I was 9 years old, I was always keen to pursue my goal of becoming a professional footballer. This was something the school were very supportive of, allowing me to attend training during school time but also providing me with catch up lessons to ensure I also fulfilled my academic potential. In 2016 I achieved my goal of signing my professional contract and this is my proudest moment to date. Throughout my time at AFC Bournemouth, I also got involved within the local community, going into schools to talk about my experience and also coaching the younger generation. Unfortunately, in 2017 I was released from AFC Bournemouth unsure of what the future would hold.

After working full time for a year and playing non-league football I decided to go to university where I studied Sports Performance Analysis at Cardiff Metropolitan University. My 3 years at university helped me mature as a young adult and put me outside my comfort zone. The combination of educational, social and entrepreneurial experiences I had helped shape me into the person I am today.

Over the 3 years I was at Ferndown Upper School (2011-2014) I was always keen to get involved in sport. Whether that was helping out on sports day or representing the school in football or any other sport. My name was first on the list!

Following my graduation in 2022 I have now set up my own football coaching business to help improve the next generation of footballing talent. This is something I am extremely passionate about. Alongside this, I also work for a specialised performance analysis company working with professional football clubs and also at the world’s first football gym. Of course, I still play football too!

I feel like my time at Ferndown Upper School installed a hard-working mentality in me. I would have to miss some lessons due to my football commitments. However, the teachers and staff were very supportive and ensured that I went above and beyond to catch up after school. This has stayed with me as during both university and now working life I still have that hard-working mentality. 

Finally, my piece of advice for current students at Ferndown Upper School would be to try something new and get out of your comfort zone. I remember when I was younger, I always wanted to do things that I felt comfortable doing, but soon as you go outside of that, you never know what opportunities might come from it. Good luck current students!